A biography of John Kerry and how his controversial stances on moral issues cost him the election.

Essay by majestik1High School, 12th grade January 2005

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John Kerry is only the third Catholic to be nominated for the President of the United States of America in our nation's 215-year history. However, unlike his Predecessors, Al Smith and the first JFK, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Kerry's beliefs contradicted with those of his own Catholic Church. These anti-Catholic viewpoints on moral issues alienated him not only from the Church and Catholic voters, but also from an increasingly conservative America who deemed his stances on key issues far too liberal for their own liking. These controversial issues along with his notoriety for "flip-flopping" would lead to his unsuccessful bid for the Presidency, loosing to the incumbent who reached an accord with much of the nation over these moral issues.

John Kerry's background provides the basis for his liberal beliefs and helps us understand how his Catholic upbringing shaped his anti-Catholic viewpoints he expresses today. John Forbes Kerry was born on December 11, 1943 at Fitzsimons Army Hospital in Aurora, Colorado (Wikipedia).

His father, Richard, was a World War II Army Air Corps test pilot (Wikipedia). His mother, Rosemary was a dedicated parent, a community and environmental activist, and proud Girl Scout leader (John Kerry). Soon after his birth, Kerry's family moved back to their home state of Massachusetts. Kerry's paternal grandparents, Fritz Kohn and Ida Lowe were both Jews born in the former Austria-Hungarian Empire (Wikipedia). They both converted to Catholicism in 1901 and changed their names to Frederick Kerry and Ida Kerry and then immigrated to the United States in 1905 (Wikipedia). Kerry's maternal grandmother, Margaret Tyndal Winthrop, is a member of a very historic New England family, whose relatives including John Winthrop, the governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and four U.S. presidents, including George W. Bush (Wikipedia). Senator Kerry's family tree demonstrates great diversity, change in faith,